Dubai is an Emirati city, capital of the emirate of the same name, one of the United Arab Emirates. It has less than 1500 km2 of area and is geographically divided by the Dubai Creek, resulting in two visible regions: Deira, to the north; and Bur Dubai, to the south. It is the largest city and the main port of the United Arab Emirates (before the federal capital Abu Dhabi). Located in the Persian Gulf, it is the capital of the Emirate of Dubai, and has more than one million inhabitants and in its metropolitan area exceeds 2.3 million. Until 2008, its population was over 1.5 million inhabitants.
Founded in the 18th century, Dubai was a modest and isolated city in the world that lived mainly from pearl fishing until the end of the 19th century. Through a difficult period between the two world wars, before entering fully into modernity in the second half of the 20th century, Dubai participated in the creation of the current United Arab Emirates in 1971 with the emir as vice president.
Although it is not the capital of the United Arab Emirates, Dubai has become the most famous city in the federation. This reputation is mainly due to the coverage of the media for their tourism projects such as the Burj Al Arab (the most luxurious hotel and the most «stars» in the world), Palm Islands (an artificial peninsula in the shape of a palm tree) , The World (an artificial archipelago that reproduces the world map), the Dubai Marina and its disproportionate buildings, not to mention the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa.
These projects, financed by the government, are presented as a way to become in the next years the main destination of the world for luxury tourism and become one of the world centers for family tourism, business and shopping.